Academy Sports sales continue to grow despite tight supplies

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Christmas has come early again for Academy Sports + Outdoors, which said Friday that third-quarter sales jumped, surpassing last year’s surge, when the pandemic spiked demand for outdoor equipment and merchandise. exercise, outdoors and recreation.

Retailer Katy said profits climbed to $161.3 million in the quarter ended Oct. 30 from $59.6 million in the same period last year. Revenue jumped 18% to $1.59 billion from $1.35 billion a year earlier.

Revenues were also up 39% from the same period in 2019, before the pandemic transformed the way people exercised and sought out recreation. Diluted earnings per share rose 132% to $1.72 from 74 cents a year earlier.

“The Academy Sports + Outdoors team has again done a great job delivering our ninth consecutive quarter of increased sales and earnings,” said Ken Hicks, the company’s chief executive. “We are confident that our strong assortment and value offering, coupled with our excellent in-store service and resilient supply chain, will enable Academy to continue to deliver strong results throughout this holiday season and beyond.”

Demand for fitness and outdoor equipment was already on the rise before the pandemic, Hicks said, but the pandemic has only heightened those interests as people slow down, get outside more and focus more on health.

“We’re in a category that has a lot of long-term success because of people’s focus on health, wellness, and pleasure,” he said.

Academy offered fewer promotions as demand increased and supplies tightened, allowing the company to make more money with fewer sales. Gross margin jumped 27% to $560.8 million from $440.5 million in the same period last year.

While the company doesn’t offer markdowns as deep or as frequent, Hicks said, the Academy still offers them on days like Black Friday. “Value is always important to our customers, so we’re going to be a part of that,” he said.

The Academy plans to open eight to 10 new stores next year, executives announced on Friday. Even e-commerce giants like Amazon recognize the importance of having stores that allow customers to inspect and curate an item before purchasing it.

“The successful retailers of the future will be both in-store and online,” he said, “and they will be intimately connected.”

Academy’s share price has nearly quadrupled since its IPO in October 2020, when it opened trading at $13. The shares rose $3.67 on Friday to close at $46.90.

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